Change management for dummies (like me)

2015/01/img_3680.jpgChange. It’s a word that can strike terror in some people, yet others embrace it. No matter which camp you are in (I typically fall in the latter), we all have a threshold for change. If too much happens in a short period of time, even the most resilient person will begin to unravel.

I have been enduring a season of change…and lots of it in a short period of time. I tend to roll with change pretty well, but this has definitely thrown me off center. It’s completely changed how I see life right now, and I really don’t like feeling that way. I prefer to look for the silver lining, and I can’t seem to find one right now. It’s a miserable place and I’m afraid of how it is going to effect those closest to me. So I have a choice. Let go or unravel.

So what do I mean? I think managing change effectively requires surrendering control. Per Wikipedia, the illusion of control is the tendency for people to overestimate their ability to control events. When things go crazy and all hell breaks loose, that’s life’s way of reminding us that we don’t have as much control over things as we think we do. I used to tell my oldest son when he would get mad at his brother that he can’t control what his brother does, but he can control how he responds. And that is exactly the mindset we should strive to maintain during times of change.

There’s a prayer that has meant a tremendous amount to me over the years. It’s called the serenity prayer and it has been used in recovery groups all over the world for many many years. My favorite part goes like this:

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

I’m ready to let go and see a real change in me. I cannot change my circumstances, but I can choose to let go of the illusion of control. After all, I haven’t been humiliated, despised, rejected, tortured, mutilated, and ultimately killed. But he who was is alive in me and wants to give me peace and hope and joy and calm in the midst of a very turbulent storm…if I would only let go and allow him to.

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